Since many areas of the country received their first frost this past week, finding eco-friendly ways to heat your office space is top on everyone's mind. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution recently printed an article on the best way to reduce energy while still keeping your workplace nice and toasty: clean and maintain your heating ducts!
Although having your heating ducts cleaned does cost a small fee, this amount of money is peanuts when compared to how much you can potentially save on your heating bills. Basically, when your heating system is not maintained, the registers, coils, heat exchangers, and other small parts become covered in dust and particles. Along with blocking the flow of air, this buildup can eventually result in mold growth, which will then contaminate your breathing air.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends that ducts be cleaned on an as-needed basis, according to the following indicators:
*mold on the hard surfaces of heating and cooling registers
*workers experiencing new unexplained, allergies
*visible dust on the inside of your ducts
To keep your office heating ducts clean, change your filters regularly and make sure they are installed tightly. You should also vacuum your office often to remove airborne particles. Doing these quick and easy things can help to green your office for the upcoming winter season, and save you quite a bit of money in the end. Talk to your supervisor or maintenance team to explore your options further!
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offer customers green shoes .
Payless ShoeSource is launching a line of shoes designed to have a lower impact on the environment, joining a number of other footwear makers and retailers that have already done the same.
The company will start selling a line of shoes next year that are made with organic cotton and linen, hemp, recycled rubber and biodegradable glues. The line will include up to 12 women’s shoes, and Payless plans to expand the line to include shoes for kids and men.
The shoes will retail, on average, for less than $30, and will be available in about 500 of the company’s 4,600 stores, with select styles in about 1,000 stores. All will be available on Payless.com.
We’re all for inexpensive shoes, of course. And if they’re green, all the better. To be honest, we believe Payless’ shoe quality isn’t top-notch (and, really, who would argue?). So when the shoes get worn out – as they surely will, and quickly, too – at least they’ll decompose in landfills quickly....
Does a worldwide shipping company – and therefore a business that leaves a HUGE carbon footprint – that claims little “efficiencies” go a long way to saving big on carbon emissions, have a point?
In the case of DHL International, we think so.
The delivery behemoth has “set itself the ambitious target of cutting emissions by 30 percent by 2020 – a task made all the more challenging by the fact that the company’s global operations span 220 countries and boast 400 aircraft, 170,000 staff, 4,500 warehouses and other properties, and thousands of trucks.”
DHL plans to cut back on its emissions by “addressing the entire supply chain.”
It's about making a lot of small changes, [a company official] says. By focusing ruthlessly on carbon reduction in all parts of the supply chain we think we can do it.
Every reduction project DHL has undertaken as part of the initiative has also resulted in a reduction in operating costs, according to [a DHL executive], providing executives with the business case to push ahead with the program.
We can only hope that if DHL can reduce its emissions and carbon footprint as it hopes, other companies such as FedEx and UPS will follow suit.
Finally, here’s an idea for the ultimate in recycling – turn a 747 jumbo jet into a youth hostel .
The plane will be ready for guests in Stockholm, Sweden in December
From the beginning of December, hostel guests will, for the first time ever, be able to spend the night in a real, seasoned jumbo jet – on the ground This is the perfect way to start your trip abroad. The plane is a used out jumbo jet model 747-200 made in 1976. It has been awarded a brand new, modern interior decoration, offering night guests an experience apart. It’s exciting for aviation enthusiasts and families with children as well as for business people. This exhilarating experience leaves no-one indifferent –we promise.
Most of the 25 rooms (three beds each, with a few exceptions) have flat-screen TVs and access to wireless broadband. Just as in a flying plane, you’ll share your lavatory with other guests (although the “lavs” will be larger and will come with showers.
And, just as in the those flying jumbos, first class is upstairs, where a few private suites are located – and these have their own bathrooms.
For the ultimate in “staying in a converted jumbo jet” luxury, you also could rent the plane’s cockpit for an overnight stay. The hostel hosts converted the cockpit into a “de lux [sp] suite with parts of the original interior saved as curiosities.”
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Looking for green solutions to your everyday office needs? Canadian-based company FrogFile is now making these products available to the masses at extremely affordable prices. With its large collection of recycled and biodegradable office supplies, you never have to worry about harming the environment again while you’re at work.
FrogFile was originally founded by Gil Yaron, an environmental lawyer charged with the duty of helping large corporations reduce their carbon footprints. Yaron believes that the solution to the climate crisis and other environmental issues lies in "greening" the items we use the most, such as pens, paper, and snacks. While many believe that larger change should occur through technology such as hybrid vehicles and solar panels, Yaron points out that these products are not economically feasible for most middle-class citizens. For this reason, the best place to start is with office supplies, which most people tend to purchase on a daily basis.
Here at Green Office Projects, we find this philosophy to be quite intriguing. Perhaps we should leave the technological changes to the mega-corporations, and occupy ourselves with greening our homes and office spaces before we do anything else.
Case in point: According to the FrogFile website, one box of paper (5,000 sheets) requires 1.3 trees, 255 gallons of water, and 345,000 BTUs of energy to produce. This translates into 27 lbs of waste transferred into landfills. Think of what a difference we could make simply by switching to more sustainable office supplies – the change could be massive! To learn more about FrogFile’s environmental philosophy, check out its website here.
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Looking to build a new office building in San Diego sometime in the near future? We recommend looking into the services of Green Roof San Diego, which is a company committed to the construction of environmentally friendly roofs for commercial office buildings. While the project is just a little over a year old, owner Jim Mumford of the Good Earth Plant Company has been in the eco business for over 30 years.
"My project has done exactly what it was intended to do: get people excited about green roof technology in San Diego," says Mumford in a recent press release published on the company website. "Thousands of people in San Diego have heard of green roofs, and many others are enthusiastic about working with me to get more green roofs in our community. The interest is huge and I can’t wait to see what the next year brings."
Green Roof structures reportedly do the following things for local offices:
* Prevent water pollution by reducing the amount of storm water entering sewer systems
* Lower energy use and energy costs for businesses and residences by insulating buildings
* Lower ambient air temperatures, combating the urban heat island effect
* Clean the air and add oxygen
* Mitigate the loss of environment, adding biodiversity
* Extend the lifespan of the roof by two to three times
That sounds like a project we can sign on to. To learn more about what Green Roof San Diego can do for your office, check out the Green Roof website!
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Check out this awesome website we found called San Diego Loves Green! The site was designed to promote eco-conscious lifestyles within the San Diego area, and is packed with useful information for both citizens and business owners alike. It includes the following features for users to browse:
*Expert Advice and Information
*Community Outreach and Development
The web portal was designed by Dawn Parker-Waites and Tawnia King, two "eco-preneurs" committed to transforming the business industry to become more environmentally friendly. Dawn Parker-Waites formed the group in an effort to make information more easily accessible. As it says on the website,
"After conducting a thorough search and realizing it was a lot of work just to locate specific details on local issues like proper recycling, disposing of hazardous household wastes such as batteries and CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps/light bulbs), simple ways to conserve water, energy incentives and programs, advice on greening a home not to mention local green businesses and what they were doing for the environment, Parker-Waites committed then and there to create a comprehensive place for the San Diego community to easily find all things Green."
Here at Green Office Projects, we’re excited about the chance to utilize such a valuable resource. It is networking projects like these that help to advance the causes of the green movement, and make a difference in our home and office practices today.
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